Caritas Philippines appeals for help to provide homes, livelihood for ‘Odette’ survivors

March 6, 2022

Caritas Philippines appealed for Php400 million to fund its recovery project for thousands of families affected by a destructive typhoon in December last year.

The Church’s humanitarian and social advocacy arm estimates that 11,000 poor families need help to recover and rebuild their lives from scratch.

Its national director Bishop Jose Colin Bagaforo said they aim to help the typhoon survivors from the “fringes of society” who are still staying in makeshift shelters.

“In the affected areas, they are really the ones who have nothing. They have lost their livelihood and they can’t even afford to build even a shanty,” Bishop Bagaforo said.

The funds will be used to build new houses and provide livelihood packages to the affected families in at least 11 dioceses.

Many of the would-be beneficiaries are fisherfolk families whose houses and fishing boats were swept away by the typhoon.

After the onslaught of Typhoon Odette (internationally known as Rai) last December 16, the national Caritas sent assistance through food and other forms of relief to alleviate the needs of the most vulnerable populations.

“But many people are still in great need,” Bishop Bagaforo said.

The bishop made the appeal last week during the online launching of the national Caritas’ biggest fund-raising campaign so far.

More than three million people were affected by the typhoon that battered several regions in the Visayas and Mindanao and claimed more than 400 lives.

The agriculture sector has incurred an estimated damage worth almost Php16 billion while the damage to infrastructure has reached over Php17 billion.

Cardinal Luis Antonio Tagle, president of Caritas Internationalis, branded the effort as a “friend-raising” activity because “we need to increase the number of friends who will care for others.”

“It is not just a program actually. It is a way to follow Jesus who offered his whole life, his body, his blood for the good of all,” Cardinal Tagle said in a video message.

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